Ten Things to Do in Denver for $10 and Under (Six Free)

Do you need some cat therapy?
Do you need some cat therapy? Kenneth Hamblin III
At the beginning of every month, Denver's creative community front-loads the calendar with an abundance of appealing events. As First Friday and Saturday celebrations pop up all over the state, galleries and museums open their doors to the curious crowds to show off their latest exhibitions. In addition to more visual art than one human could possibly see in a weekend, the days ahead offer every manner of entertainment, including a canonical symphony, a pinball tournament, a standup-comedy drinking game and even kitten therapy. Even the staunchest penny-pinchers can find something to do this lively weekend, as anybody can attend the following ten events for $10 and under. Better yet, six of them are free and open to the public.  

click to enlarge Conductor and CMF music director Jean-Marie Zeitouni. - COLORADO MUSIC FESTIVAL
Conductor and CMF music director Jean-Marie Zeitouni.
Colorado Music Festival
Colorado Music Festival: Zeitouni Conducts Mahler’s Ninth
Thursday, August 3, 7:30 p.m.
Chautauqua Auditorium

Since 1976, the Colorado Music Festival has filled the summer months with the tuneful stylings of the finest conductors, musicians and composers from every corner of the world. The festival's reputation for world-class elegance continued throughout its 2017 season, with a series of performances that breathed joyous life into the centuries-old compositions of the classical-music canon. While it's all winding down soon, classical music aficionados still have a few more chances to see great works in Boulder's historic Chautauqua Auditorium. Join festival music director and world-class conductor Jean-Marie Zeitouni as he leads the CMF Orchestra through a rousing performance of Gustav Mahler's otherworldly Symphony No. 9 in D Major. Often cited as a bridge between the Romantic and Modern eras, Mahler's Ninth is as stirring today as it was when it first premiered. Member admission starts at $9 on Chautauqua's box office page.

click to enlarge WRITE CLUB DENVER
Write Club Denver
Write Club Denver: Battle Royale
Thursday, August 3, 8 p.m.
Syntax Physic Opera
$10 Donation

Though writers typically seem like a harmlessly bookish bunch, a fierce sense of competition lurks beneath our tweedy and bespectacled facades. Write Club Denver, a self-described "literary thunderdome," puts that subtext into the spotlight with a series of head-to-head competitive readings from Denver-based authors, performers and creatives. Using royal themes as a springboard, the first round pits Cory Byrom against Naomi Kelsey, followed by Colin Iago McCarthy versus Jessie Hanson and then Mitch Slevc versus Eryc Eyl in the second and third rounds. All proceeds from the event will be donated to a charity of the victor's choosing. Visit the Facebook event page to learn more.

click to enlarge DENVER ART SOCIETY
Denver Art Society
Denver Art Society First Friday
Friday, August 4, 5-11 p.m.
Denver Art Society

The First Friday of the month means a gauntlet of galleries and arty parties all across the state, but a stroll through Denver's Santa Fe Arts District remains the gold standard. While galleries lining the thoroughfare open their doors to the public for free, there's no better hub for the lively art walk than the Denver Art Society. DAS will present live local music until 11 p.m.; guests can also marvel at a suspended artwork installation from Jason Bushey and murals by Grace Noel. To find out more, visit the Denver Art Society online.

click to enlarge RINO ART DISTRICT
RiNo Art District
RiNo First Friday: Kitten Therapy
Friday, August 4, 6-9 p.m.
RiNo Art District Headquarters

While the competition is steep, the lively River North Art District offers one of the city's best art walks along with an abundance of hip bars and gourmet restaurants. It has something special planned for August, however. Kitten Therapy, wherein the stressed-out can simmer down in the adorable company of baby cats, improbably yet gloriously does exist, and it's happening on Friday, August 4, at RiNo Art District headquarters (2901 Blake Street, Suite 165) from 6 to 9 p.m. Whether you're looking to adopt your own rescued feline friend or merely livening up your art walk with some cuddles, everyone could benefit from a little kitten therapy. Visit the RiNo Art District online for more details.

click to enlarge DENVER ART MUSEUM
Denver Art Museum
Free First Saturday
Saturday, August 5
Denver Art Museum

For artsy Denver residents in the know, the arrival of a new month also means another Free First Saturday at the Denver Art Museum, 100 West 14th Avenue Parkway. Admission to all of the museum's non-ticketed exhibitions is free and open to the public; you can enjoy exciting new exhibits nearly every month, as well as the world-class permanent collection, which showcases everything from Pre-Columbian artifacts to paintings by Claude Monet and Winslow Homer. Even the museum itself is a work of art; just walking through the Gio Ponti- or Daniel Libeskind-designed buildings is worth braving the increased crowds. The DaM is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; visit to learn more.

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